LOS ANGELES (CNS) - Councilman Kevin de León celebrated the opening of a Tiny Home Village in Highland Park today after sleeping overnight at the 224-bed interim shelter facility for people experiencing homelessness.
"The Arroyo Seco Tiny Home Village is all about restoring hope to people whose lives have been shattered into 1 million pieces by homelessness," he said. "This is a crisis of despair and hopelessness affecting us all. But that's changing and today marks another step toward reversing the pain and suffering to those on our streets who are experiencing it."
The 6.8-acre site within Arroyo Seco Park, which was completed in 90 days, is the largest tiny home village in the United States, providing 117 housing units and 224 non-congregate beds as transitional residences for people experiencing homelessness in the Highland Park community.
Each tiny home cost about $55,000, making it the least expensive source of homeless housing available in Los Angeles County, officials said. Every home in the village has been hand-painted by renowned YouTube artist Zach Hsieh, alongside a crew of other artists he recruited to beautify the village.
"Solving homelessness demands creative and lasting solutions that meet the immediate and critical need for housing today, while giving our unhoused neighbors a path to a permanent place to call home tomorrow," said Mayor Eric Garcetti, who attended the village's opening on Thursday morning. "The only way to end this crisis is with more long-term and quality housing options -- and as the largest tiny homes village in the country, the Arroyo Seco Village is the latest milestone in our commitment to deliver healing and hope to our most vulnerable neighbors."
The village, operated by Hope of The Valley Rescue Mission, was funded and built by the city of Los Angeles.
"This is a part of Councilman De León commitment to do his part in developing 25,000 new homeless housing units by 2025," the 14th District Office wrote in a statement issued Tuesday.
De León -- who is running for office to replace Mayor Eric Garcetti, who has reached his term limit -- slept at the tiny homes, he said, to prove that housing can be made comfortably and economically for the unhoused community.
Residents are expected to move into the village on Nov. 2.
The Arroyo Seco site at 5950 Arroyo Drive is the seventh village to open in the city and the sixth to be operated by Hope of The Valley.